The average temperature of the human body has been Constantly decreasing Since the middle of the 19th century, and scientists are not sure why. New research points to one key factor that may play a role: gut microbes.
Examining information from patients in the hospital Cesis – where the body reacts to the disease in the most dangerous way – as well as in tests on mice, the researchers behind the study looked at the relationship between gut bacteria, temperature changes and health outcomes.
The selection of sepsis patients is deliberate, because the condition can lead to different temperature fluctuations in the body, which is often associated with the possibility of a person coming out and recovering.
“We know that the temperature response is important in sepsis because it strongly predicts who will live and who will die.” He says. Microbiologist and immunologist Robert Dixon of the University of Michigan.
“But we don’t know what drives this difference and whether it can be improved to help patients.”
The team studied gut bacteria samples taken from 116 people with sepsis and found that there were wide variations in the microbiota and that the differences were associated with changes in the patients’ temperatures.
Bacteria from Firmicutes phylum They were highly correlated with high. Fever. These bacteria produce substances important for growth and health and influence the body’s immune response and metabolism.
While it’s not enough to explain why it’s gut bacteria that’s been cooling our guts for the past 150 years, it’s an interesting hypothesis — and it shows how our gut microbiome interacts with body temperature.
“In fact, our patients have more diversity in their microbiota than is reflected in their own genetics.” He says. internist Kale Bongers, also from University of Michigan. “Any two patients may be more than 99 percent identical in their genomes, but have literally 0 percent overlap in their gut bacteria.”
In a study of healthy mice with and without a bacterial microbiome, lower body temperatures were observed in animals without the bacteria – and treatment with antibiotics led to lower body temperatures in the mice.
Moreover, in both humans and mice, the same bacterial family appears to be associated with temperature fluctuations. The next step is to look at many samples from many people and figure out what biological mechanisms underlie this relationship.
With more research, we may be able to develop ways to influence the gut microbiome, specifically body temperature – and that could improve the outlook for people with diseases like sepsis.
“There’s a reason why temperature is such a vital sign.” He says. Bongers. “Both are easily measured and tell us important information about the body’s inflammation and metabolic state.”
The study was published in American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine.